It’s completely easy to dismiss any kind of conspiracy when it starts with “They attacked me for no reason!” because most people scoff and say “There’s always a reason”. But in the case of the newly released pro-life movie, Unplanned, Twitter literally did suspend the account for no reason and even admitted to it. But that wasn’t all they did.
The Twitter account for Unplanned has been keeping track of the ridiculous shenanigans taking place across the social media service, which started with a suspension of the account over the weekend as the movie was debuting in theaters. On March 31st, 2019 after appealing the suspension, Twitter’s support responded saying that the account didn’t violate any rules of the terms of service.
— UnplannedMovie (@UnplannedMovie) April 1, 2019
If you’re unable to read Twitter’s response in the tweet or in the images (or in case either get taken down), Twitter’s support staff states…
“After further review, we have unsuspended your account as it does not appear to be in violation of the Twitter Rules […]
“Your account is now unsuspended. We appreciate your patience and apologize for any inconvenience.
“Please note that it may take an hour or so for your follower and following numbers to return to normal.”
According to the Unplanned Twitter account, they had amassed more than 200,000 followers since opening the account back in August of 2018. However, they lost more than 100,000 followers, they were then suspended, and when the account returned the follower count was reset. All of this allegedly took place directly after being officially retweeted by Donald Trump Jr.
— UnplannedMovie (@UnplannedMovie) April 1, 2019
These claims were not made without receipts, however.
Various blue checkmarks on Twitter were actually following the account and keeping track of the shenanigans surrounding the Unplanned movie’s official Twitter (which was not given a blue checkmark, by the way).
Mike Tokes, on March 31st, 2019 at 10:57pm, took screenshots of the before and after, showing that the account did indeed have over 100,000 followers before being brought down to just 13,500.
WOW: First @UnplannedMovie‘s Twitter account was suspended, and now Twitter unilaterally removed roughly 85,000 of their followers.
Many users who followed the account are saying they have somehow unfollowed, and cannot follow them again.
This is conservative censorship. pic.twitter.com/C1OZUcnrOj
— Mike Tokes (@MikeTokes) April 1, 2019
Interestingly enough, on March 31st, 2019, at the exact same time, 10:57pm, pro-life advocate Lila Rose also tweeted out a screenshot showing that the account for Unplanned was down to 25,500 followers.
— Lila Rose (@LilaGraceRose) April 1, 2019
Other users also noted that the numbers appeared to be fluctuating for them… in real-time.
Now it dropped pic.twitter.com/IEesVODswk
— PRstallion 🇺🇸🇵🇷 45 is the 2nd coming. #MAGA (@ArmandoGraziani) April 1, 2019
16 minute difference pic.twitter.com/sP80u9o0h2
— A Catholic Dad (@acatholicdad141) April 1, 2019
This wasn’t a numerical discrepancy with the follower counts, it was actually the algorithm rapidly removing users from the follower count of Unplanned… in real-time.
As bizarre as that sounds, multiple users snapped footage of them being unfollowed from the Unplanned movie Twitter account.
Twitter user Rubix responded to a post from One America News network host, Jack Posobiec, showing a video of how every time they follow the account, seconds later they would automatically have their follow retracted.
Twitter automatically removes my follow right as soon as I leave @UnplannedMovie account. I tried several times and Twitter is automatically unfollowing. #UnplannedMovie #TwitterCensorship#FreeSpeech pic.twitter.com/RPKEQ3HWGz
— Rubix (@Rubix_888) April 1, 2019
Other users also shared video footage of them being forcibly removed from the follower count of the Unplanned movie Twitter page.
User Manny Guilllen posted an eight second video of them being removed in real-time.
Same here! Unacceptable! pic.twitter.com/quWRjtnpnJ
— Manny (@mannyguilllen) April 1, 2019
User Jaycaleb also posted a 40 second video of them being removed from the page… also happening in real-time.
Video proof. pic.twitter.com/tbQNVk1jQe
— Jaycaleb (@Jaycaleb8) April 1, 2019
Kristina Lee also posted an eight second video of being removed from the page after purposefully following the Unplanned movie account.
— Kristina Lee (@KristinaLeeHall) April 1, 2019
And if those didn’t convince you, political news contributor and blue checkmark Kambree Kawahine Koa also posted a six second video of being removed as well.
Just happened to me too @JackPosobiec
Video below pic.twitter.com/sRiMRLLby1
— Kambree Kawahine Koa (@KamVTV) April 1, 2019
Various users and celebrities, including the actors in the film and the acquaintances of the actors, posted tweets asking what was happening with the film’s Twitter page and why was it being suppressed, having followers removed, and why was being targeted for suspension?
Actor Adam Baldwin has been tweeting about it, along with Everybody Loves Raymond actress Patricia Heaton, who asked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey why the social media service won’t let her follow the Unplanned movie account?
Hey @jack – why aren’t you letting me follow @UnplannedMovie ? I’ve tried eight times to support my friend @AbbyJohnson and @Twitter won’t let me. Others are having the same issue. Please correct this. Thank you.
— Patricia Heaton (@PatriciaHeaton) April 1, 2019
The follower count is now slowly climbing back up to where it was before the suspension. In real-time I’ve watched it edge from the 26,500 mark up to the 37,300 mark over the course of half an hour.
What I was unable to verify is if the unfollowing was happening in real-time for desktop users. It appeared to be something affecting those on mobile devices for some reason.
Now unlike Twitter there doesn’t appear to be any impishness taking place on YouTube. There are (so far) no complaints about view manipulation, subscriber count drops, or like/dislike skullduggery. This is surprising given that YouTube was caught manipulating search results for pro-life content, as reported by Lifesitenews.com.
The trailer is also still available for viewing.
So far there doesn’t appear to be any publicly official responses from Twitter about the matter. However, this isn’t the first time that Twitter was caught manipulating accounts, especially against those who identify as Conservatives who are align on the Right side of the political spectrum. There have been countless reports about Twitter shadow banning users, especially if they espouse the “wrong” views.
Vice even did a report on it back in July of 2018, proudly proclaiming that Twitter was no longer shadow banning Conservatives and Republicans. Months later Republican Congressman Devin Nunes sued Twitter for $250 million for allegedly manipulating the elections by shadow banning his account during the campaign season.
It also doesn’t help Twitter’s case when they’ve purposefully and inadvertently admitted that they were actively shadow banning users to suppress their content and the scope of their reach on the platform. In the case of Unplanned, we got to see in real-time how those suppression measures are employed.
You can view Unplanned in theaters now, or visit the official website for more information.